RVUCOM’s Rural and Wilderness Medicine Track gathered on a beautiful fall day in Castlewood Canyon to practice their map and compass skills. Students were tasked with locating several injured mountain bikers using only maps and compasses as their guides. Once the injured patients were located, students assessed the injuries, then either treated or transported them (via homemade stretchers) to a waiting ambulance. Among the injured was a man experiencing cardiac distress, a biker with a head injury and a broken, bleeding arm, another biker had severely bruised ribs and an injured shoulder, and finally, a pregnant woman in labor.
The annual Orienteering course is an elective for second-year students in the Rural and Wilderness Medicine track. The course is designed to teach students how to locate injured Patients in isolated areas using only orienteering skills.
South Metro Fire Rescue participated in the training by providing instruction to the medical students, as well as teaching them how to transport patients. “Having the opportunity to leave the classroom behind and learn from our local EMS and fire crews is invaluable,” said Elizabeth Stoll, OMS II. “It is so much fun to work with our classmates, assess patients in the field and have the opportunity to make split second decisions that will one day save lives. I am very grateful for the Rural Medicine Track and the hands on training it provides us.”
“At the end of our first year the Rural and Wilderness Medicine Track took a trip to Baggs, WY for a weekend, where we learned the basics of triage, first response, and mass casualty management,” said Charlotte Ballantine, OMS II. “This past week, on October 3, we were able to revisit some of those skills. As we began the scenario, I thought back to our first simulation in WY, which rapidly deteriorated into slightly organized chaos. This time, our experiences in Baggs helped us work as a group from the beginning. We immediately designated roles, made a plan, stayed calm, and communicated with each other and EMS personnel throughout the simulation. There were still mistakes made, and many areas for improvement, but I really enjoyed seeing the gains we had made as a group from our first day in WY to now.”